Tacoma, Ohio

While being employed by an old line threshing machine company
and being sent to another state, now more than a third of a century
ago these years have gone and merged into oblivion, I still
remember ‘One Grand June Morning’ of that year.

I was assigned to handle a time settlement and unload off a flat
car and deliver a steam engine to the purchaser’s home at the
corporation limit. The buyer knew very little of how to operate a
steamer. Now after three and a half decades that June Morning is
still vivid to me as if it had happened yesterday. I arrived at the
railroad station by train to see the steamer setting on the flat
car ready to be unloaded, the smoke and steam making a wonderful
scene in the air.

My first duty was to make settlement before delivering the
engine. I contacted the buyer, who had given a time order for a
settlement with the rates and chattel mortgage as required for a
time sale. He at once stated, ‘That he was going to pay the
cash for the engine in full but must have a discount.’ There
being no mention or provisions made on the time order of a discount
in case of cash, I informed him I would not deviate from the order
excepting he pay the full amount called for and he and the company
settle that as likely they would. This he flatly refused to do so
my next move was to go to the telegraph office in the depot and
wire as to how to handle this settlement. A young operator was on
duty and his first job, a relief operator I found him to be. While
waiting for a reply, I noticed a young lady, who had missed a
passenger train that A. M., out looking the steam engine over and
seemed very much interested. Both the telegraph operator and the
engine buyer remarked, ‘She was an entire stranger to them but
might be a prospective buyer and that a two way deal might be
closed with that very attractive and good looking girl. The reply
came over the wire and since I could read code I understood it as
it came in.

‘Sell for cash, allow cash discount’ was the reply, and
a settlement at the bank was quickly transacted.

When I returned to run the engine off the car the young lady
approached and asked, ‘If she could run the engine off the car
as she had run and fired one many a day when help was not
available’. Her father had a traction engine the same make and
size, so after the engine was off we let her try her hand and found
she surely knew as well as many old experienced engineers. I took
the same train as she that evening for the city where the branch
house was located and she told me she, had taken a business course
and a position had been offered her. Many years had passed and
having some old pictures in the ALBUM, I received a letter from a
person wondering if I was the fellow and remembered the day when I
went to unload and get settlement for a steam engine and knew the
answer to the reply message by knowing the Morse code, and also
giving a girl permission to run the steam engine a few minutes.

Now the final outcome needs no explanation, he being a relief
operator was transferred to the city where this lady was employed,
met her and the result which comes to many is easily read between
the lines he married her.

The ALBUM is responsible for bringing to mind once more the half
forgotten incident of that beautiful June day as well as the ever
remembered days of the old steam engine of yesteryear which is past
history. That, together with the telegraph which played a part on
many occasions when selling threshing machinery. Their passing
gives one so deeply interested an awe of despair and fond memories
of by gone days of the steam threshing rig and telegraphy.

Farm Collector Magazine
Farm Collector Magazine
Dedicated to the Preservation of Vintage Farm Equipment